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Lower speed limits will make us healthier
I HAVE noticed that 20mph speed limits have received some negative comments in your recent issues.
I wanted to stand up in support of these limits, as a doctor with particular interest in preventive medicine. Measures to reduce the speed at which cars travel make it more pleasant for other road users, most notably pedestrians and cyclists, and reduce the frequency and severity of road accidents.
There are multiple health benefits that anyone who chooses to cycle or walk (or combine one of these options with taking public transport) may benefit from.
Individuals who get regular exercise through their mode of transport have reduced risk of heart disease, obesity and mental illness, and communities where fewer people drive private motor vehicles will benefit from safer, quieter streets and increased social capital.
York particularly suffers from poor air quality. For all these reasons, I think that 20mph is plenty for drivers in York.
Sarah Walpole, Academic clinical fellow/CMT1 doctor, Hull York Medical School, University of York .
• WHAT a load of nonsense some people are writing to argue against 20mph limits.
C Page (Letters, September 5) suggests you need to go faster to save fuel: the fact is if you want to go faster in a given situation, you will need to use more energy; going faster will simply get you to the next line of stationary traffic sooner, where you will have to wait longer with your engine idling.
C Page then asks if it is fair to put the onus on motorists to avoid accidents. Yes it is: motorists bring danger with them due to the size weight and speed of their vehicle and therefore should take full responsibility for that danger. Any motorist who is not prepared to do this is not fit to be on the road.
R Watson, Clifton , York.
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